Forbes: The Unique Job Perks That Employees Love
by John Hall
In a recent national survey, 95 percent of Americans consider a job’s perks and benefits before deciding to either stay in a position or accept an offer. Attracting top talent with just a higher salary is something of the past. Leadersovercome this hiring hurdle by creating and implementing unique perks to differentiate themselves from other companies. Here are 25 companies that are leading the way with creative perks that keep their employees more than happy.
Host Puppy Fight Club (the nice kind):
The Nerdery doesn’t just open their doors to coders and digital natives. All employees can bring their dogs to work and Nerd Support will even arrange for a mobile groomer appointment for any overly shaggy pup. Each Thursday, the Nerditorium is opened for Puppy Fight Club, where the nerds’ fluffy friends can frolic unleashed.
Company Beer: Threadless is best known for its T-shirts designed by independent artists and designers. CEO Tom Ryan wanted to do something unique as a perk, so he went to a friend that owns Finch’s Beer and had them brew a special Threadless IPA. Tom said, “It was a great collaborative project that brought together the Threadless Design community and the staff.” In the Threadless kitchen, there is always a keg full of Threadless Pale Ale.
Throw a luggage party: Freeborn and Peters is a law firm that knows how to get employees out of the office for a little R&R. Each year the company holds a “luggage party.” Every employee is eligible, and each associate that wants to be part of the drawing brings a packed bag into the office on the day of the party. Four names are drawn, and the winners are whisked away by limo to the airport for an all-expenses paid weekend trip to Las Vegas.
Encourage play: Red Ventures is a technology company that works with various businesses as a strategic marketing and sales partner. Their headquarters houses a full-length indoor basketball court, gym, locker rooms, and a putting green. Employees are encouraged to take a break and enjoy the amenities. Just as an additional perk, the Charlotte Bobcats practice on the court in the off-season.
Strategize over drinks under the sun: Findr Interactive is a part of a group of separate companies. However, the individual agencies still make time to get to know one another’s staff. They have an annual retreat in the Caribbean to talk strategy and clients. But mostly, the staff finds time to relax under the tropical sun and build relationships over some much-needed fruity rum drinks.
Give away the car keys: InDemand Interpreting employs interpreters to work with hospitals and medical offices The CEO awards an employee who exhibited extraordinary performance with a “Box Lunch.” This isn’t what you think. The selected staff member is given the keys to the CEO’s Porsche Boxster to drive to a company-paid lunch. It’s a way his employees know that he trusts them — even with a prized possession.
Encourage sleep, and vacations: It’s one thing to offer a flexible work schedule or a relaxed vacation policy as a job perk. Today’s employees almost expect that in a position. The people at Magoosh take this benefit to a whole new level by encouraging workers to complete tasks at (literally!) any time of day and, to date, no vacation time has ever been denied.
Encourage competitive play:
A masseuse could help your employees relax: Veterans United employees spend their days finding ways to provide veterans with home loans. One of VU’s perks is that professional masseuses are there everyday to help employees take a break from their hectic work day. After the employees finish their massage, they’re welcome to can grab a bite from a selection of fresh fruit and health snacks.
Travel together: Barton Publishing’s focus is on providing product and information on health and nutrition. Keeping active is a core value, so they plan company trips around outdoor adventures to bring the team together. The staff has gone whitewater rafting and zip-lining in Banff National Park, mountain climbing in Arizona, and they will soon be setting off to race dune buggies in Baja.
Open the books: Tagged CEO Greg Tseng described one of their most important perks as their transparency. Once a month the company shares their financials (revenue, expenses, profits, etc.) with their employees. “Before we make any major acquisition or decision, we run it by everybody in the company,” Tseng said. When someone joins the Tagged team, they know that they will always know where the company is and what’s next.
Provide your team with necessities, for free: Merchandize Liquidators provides surplus merchandise to the masses, but it also uses this as a perk for employees. Purchasing the necessities in life can put a huge dent in your wallet. The company provides staff with cosmetics, shampoos, cleaning products, toothpaste, cell phones and a variety of other products. All that saved money definitely adds to the bottom line of an employee paycheck.
Allow flexibility and promote change: MorrisCore employees basically have the run of the place, and management even encourages it. If an employee gets bored with his job, he has the opportunity to change or shape it into something else entirely. Furthermore, all employees only have to log 35 hours per week to receive a full-time salary.
Give the gift of fitness: HZDG is a full-service integrated creative agency that doesn’t encourage its employees to stay glued to their computers all day. HZDG’s president, Karen Zuckerman, had such a great experience with a personal trainer that she added it as a job perk for her employees. Now her personal trainer comes to the office twice a week and does a free boot camp.
Mani/Pedi Budget: 2HB, a company that provides Systems Engineering and Software Engineering services, includes standard of living expenses in their employee benefit packages. One of the most unique perks is a $50 grooming perk each month. Employees can use it for a mani, pedi, massage, or just getting a nice hair cut to get that extra confidence boost.
Put the Boss to Work: An affordable perk that has worked in the past is having a “Boss Does Your Chores” perk, said Andrew Schrage of Moneycrashers.com. If the staff reaches a certain sales goal or other benchmark, then the management team is responsible for performing the more menial duties of its staff members.
John is the CEO of Digital Talent Agents, an agency that specializes in helping companies, entrepreneurs and business leaders build their brands by getting quality content published from them in reputable online publications that reach their target markets.